As I blogged last week about the five things every person in every profession needs from their boss, it got me to thinking. Although w-o-r-k is a four-letter word that can convey joy, frustration, satisfaction, and anxiety, it does not necessarily define us. In spite of how much time and attention work might demand of us, something else shapes us more dramatically – family.
The formative years we spend at home are what aligns our moral compass and sets us up for the journey of life. How we dream, handle adversity and disappointment, our sense of empathy and understanding – they all start at home.
Accordingly, here are five things everyone in our family needs to hear frequently:
- I love you
- I forgive you
- I’m sorry
- I’m here for you
- I’m proud of you
There are others to be sure, such as “thank you” and “I believe in you,” but regardless of which words you say, they must come from a place of sincerity. Lip service becomes obvious – especially to those who know us best. What is absolutely critical is that the words are backed up and supported by consistent action. Say them and demonstrate them to those that you love, and you’ll set them up for a successful journey.
I love public speaking. I really do. There’s a burning passion inside me for it. Now, whether that’s a call for therapy or medication might be a discussion for another time, but standing before a large audience and helping them realize their potential and giving them tools to be more successful has become a calling for me.
This week I’m speaking at a conference in Austin for two days on The Art of Professionalism and Leading a Multi-Generational Team. Preparing for my remarks got me to thinking about what the audience needed to hear. This led me to five things.
There are five things that everyone needs to hear from their boss, manager, supervisor, or director. These five things cut across professions and generations, and they’re essential to maximizing people’s effectiveness in the workplace. Everyone, regardless of their job duties or where they align on the org chart, need the following:
- Clear expectations
- Opportunities to contribute
- Guidance and correction when needed
- Feedback on their workplace relationships
- Praise and recognition
If you’re not providing these to your staff, start now. If you are, by all means please continue. But above all, these five things have to come from a place of sincerity and authenticity. Providing them from a selfish motive of simply increasing productivity will eventually ring hollow. Provide these five things because you genuinely care about your people. Do that and watch them maximize their potential.